Friday, September 30, 2016

A Historian After My Heart?

Dominic Selwood.

Spies, Sadists and Sorcerers
AMAZON History No. 1 Bestseller

Four Sample Chapters

After reading what he had to say, I'd say yes. Probably in the balance of probabilities. I'll quote some paragraphs from the foreword:

There are, of course, fixed historical facts. For instance, in 1215, the barons forced King John to agree Magna Carta. In 1533, King Henry VIII broke from Rome. No one is going to dispute these dates. However, scratch deeper into the surrounding events, and things become less certain.

Take Magna Carta. It is one of the world’s most famous documents—the West’s charter of liberty and democracy. Except it wasn’t. John and the barons disowned it within nine weeks and threw it in the bin, where it lay unused and irrelevant for centuries. Our modern image of its significance was only invented in the 1600s, when it was resurrected and dubiously hoisted as a battle standard for the will of the people against tyranny.

Or take Henry’s break from Rome, and the transformation of English religion finished by his children, Edward VI and Elizabeth I. We now know many of the changes were implemented with state terror and violence—the Tudors effectively massacred their people into a new religion. And yet, the Tudor spin machine constructed its story of Henry the benign Renaissance spiritual liberator so well that it is still taught in schools around the world.

What is true for Tudors, is true for most Wasas too - Gustav I Wasa, who made the country offidicially Lutheran in 1527, his son Eric XIV were heavily tyrannising Catholicism, Eric's brother John III gave us Catholics a break and married a Polish princess. His son, Sigismund (III in Poland, only one in Sweden) "overdid it" by actually allowing Catholic priests, Jesuits, in Stockholm. Among the opposition was one French Huguenot having found refuge in Sweden, who made all who were willing to listen to him afraid Sigismund would be preparing a St Bartholomew's massacre. And at the head of the opposition, Duke Carl, the last main son of Gustav Wasa, uncle of the young King. His - Sigismund's - flight and the defeat and massacre of the loyal Catholics (there were some around still) is a bit like Culloden./HGL

Thursday, September 29, 2016

A Closer Look at Mayan Language Family

divides into Cholan–Tzeltalan, Huastecan, Q'anjobalan–Chujean, Quichean–Mamean and Yucatecan.

divides into Ch'ol group and Tzeltalan group.

Ch'ol group divides into Cholan group and Chortian group.

Cholan group divides into Chontal, 36,500 speakers in Mexico (Tabasco), and Ch'ol properly speaking, 145,000 speakers in Mexico (Chiapas). 181,000 speakers for Cholan group.

Chortian group divides into Ch'orti' proper, 30,000 speakers in Guatemala, Honduras, and formerly Ch'olti', extinct from Guatemala, Belize. Extinct 18th century. Chortian group 30,000 speakers. Ch'ol group overall 211,000 speakers.

Tzeltalan group divides into Tzeltal, 372,000 speakers Mexico (Chiapas) and Tzotzil, 225,000 speakers Mexico (Chiapas). 597,000 speakers for Tzeltalan. 808,000 speakers for Cholan–Tzeltalan.

divides into Chicomuceltec, extinct from Mexico (Chiapas), as well as from Guatemala (Huehuetenango), extinct 1970s–80s, and into Huastec, 131,000 speakers Mexico (San Luis Potosi, Veracruz), which is all of Huastecan group.

divides into Chujean group and Q'anjob'alan group.

Chujean group divides into Chuj, 43,000 speakers Mexico (Chiapas), Guatemala (Huehuetenango), and into Tojolab'al with 34,000 speakers, Mexico (Chiapas). Chujean group 77,000 speakers.

divides into Q'anjob'al–Jakaltek and Mocho' (Mototzintleco).

divides into Jakaltek, 100,000 speakers Mexico (Chiapas), Guatemala (Huehuetenango), and into Q'anjob'al, 78,000 speakers, Guatemala (Huehuetenango), and into Akatek, 57,000 speakers, Mexico (Chiapas), Guatemala (Huehuetenango).

Mocho' (Mototzintleco) is one language with 140 speakers in Mexico (Chiapas).

235,140 speakers for Q'anjob'al–Jakaltek. 312,140 speakers for Q'anjobalan–Chujean.

divides into Greater Mamean and Greater Quichean.

Greater Mamean
divides into Ixilean and Mamean.

divides into Awakatek, 18,000 speakers in Guatemala (Huehuetenango), and Ixil, 69,000 speakers Guatemala (El Quiché). Ixilean, 87,000 speakers.

divides into Mam, 540,000 speakers Mexico (Chiapas), Guatemala, and into Tektitek, 5,000 speakers in Guatemala (Huehuetenango). Mamean 545,000 speakers. Greater Mamean 632,000 speakers.

Greater Quichean
divides into Q'eqchi' language, Poqom group, Quichean proper, and Sakapultek, Sipakapense and Uspantek.

Q'eqchi' is a language with 800,000 speakers in Guatemala, Belize.

Poqom group divides into Poqomam, 49,000 speakers in Guatemala and Poqomchi', 92,000 speakers in Guatemala (Alta Verapaz, Baja Verapaz, El Quiché). 141,000 speakers for Poqom group.

Quichean proper
divides into Quiche–Achi and another group.

divides into Achi, 85,000 speakers in Guatemala (Baja Verapaz) and into K'iche' 2,300,000 speakers in Guatemala. 2,385,000 speakers for Quiche–Achi.

Other group of Quichean proper divides into
Kaqchikel, 450,000 speakers in Guatemala and into Tz'utujil, 84,000 speakers in Guatemala. 2,919,000 speakers for Quichean proper.

Sakapultek is a language spoken by 15,000 in Guatemala (El Quiché).

Sipakapense is a language spoken by 8,000 in Guatemala (San Marcos).

Uspantek is a language spoken by 3,000 in Guatemala (El Quiché).

Greater Quichean is spoken by 3,886,000 people.

is divided into Mopan–Itza and Yucatec–Lacandon.

is divided into Itza', now extinct from Guatemala (El Petén), where 12 speakers survived in 1986, and Mopan, 14,000 speakers in Belize, Guatemala (El Petén). All group, then, 14,000 speakers.

is divided into Lacandon, 560 speakers in Mexico (Chiapas), and into Yucatec Maya, 770,000 speakers in Mexico, Belize. 770,560 speakers for Yucatec–Lacandon. Yucatecan has 784,560 speakers.

808,000 Cholan–Tzeltalan
131,000 Huastecan
312,140 Q'anjobalan–Chujean
632,000 Greater Mamean
3,886,000 Greater Quichean
784,560 Yucatecan.

6,553,700 speakers of Mayan languages, if I count correctly. I am here supposing there is no overlap and I am adding together statistics from different censuses.

Of the language family 3 languages have died, but none of the three in immediate connexion with the Conquista.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St Michael, Archangel

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Vous savez que les Aztèques parlèrent Nahuatl et les Incas Quechua?

Voici une citation:

Les conquistadores (!) espagnols Hernan Cortés et Francisco Pizarro anéantirent les Aztèques du Mexique et les Incas d'Amérique du Sud.

Et voici la source:

p. 27 1492 - 1898 : La Conquête
(partie 1 de Une Histoire populaire des USA pour les ados)
Howard Zinn adapté par Rebecca Stefoff (?)
Au diable vauvert

Alors, regardons un peu de statistiques:

Nāhuatlahtōlli, Mācēhuallahtōlli, Mexihcatlahtōlli
Mexique, Salvador, États-Unis, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Canada
Région Au Mexique :
État de Mexico, District Fédéral, Puebla, Veracruz, Hidalgo, Guerrero, Morelos, Oaxaca, Michoacán et Durango.
Aux États-Unis :
Arizona, Californie, Nouveau-Mexique et Texas (principalement)1
Nombre de locuteurs
entre 1,58 million (recensement de 2010 au Mexique)2 et 2 millions (estimation globale en 2008)1
VSO, polysynthétique,
Note 1
Peter K. Austin, One thousand languages: living, endangered, and lost, University of California Press, 2008 (ISBN 0-520-25560-7, lire en ligne [archive]), p. 198.
Note 2
INEGI, Principales resultados del Censo de Población y Vivienda 2010 [archive], p.57, 2011.
Argentine, Bolivie, Chili, Colombie, Équateur, Pérou
Andes, Amazonie
Nombre de locuteurs
9,6 millions

Il faut encore savoir que la langue officielle de l'Empire Péruvien n'était pas le Quechua, mais l'Aymara. Et qu'en Mexique il y a eu tant d'autres petits peuples parlant d'autres langues que le Nahuatl.

Langues mayas
(autre culture précolombienne de Mexique)
Mexique, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, Salvador
Nombre de locuteurs
5 000 000
VOS, polysynthétique, ergative
(la langue officielle des Incas)
aymar aru
Bolivie, Pérou, Argentine, Chili
Qollasuyu, Moquegua, Tarapacá
Nombre de locuteurs
2 200 0001
en mexique
Mexique, États-Unis
Sonora, Arizona
Nombre de locuteurs
16 000 au Mexique 406 en Arizona1
Typologie (du texte)
Le yaqui, ou yoeme (yoem noki en langue vernaculaire), est une langue uto-aztèque ... Il s'agit d'une langue suffixale, de type agglutinante et flexionnelle. La relation des unités sont marquées par des cas. Il s'agit d'une langue qui a un ordre de base de type SOV (Sujet_Verbe_Objet)
États-Unis, Mexique
Arizona, Sonora
Nombre de locuteurs
11 000
Très proche de Pima bajo
qui a 500 locuteurs en Sonora ; Chihuahua
Tepehuan du Nord
Nombre de locuteurs
8 000
Très proche de ...
Tepehuan du Sud-Est
15 000 locuteurs en Durango
et de ...
Tepehuan du Sud-Ouest
8 700 locueturs (en 2005), aussi en Durango
Mais les Tchitchimèques, alors?
Combien y a-t-il de Tchitchimèques de nos jours?
Chichimeken (auf Deutsch)
Das Ende der Chichimeken kam gegen Ende des 12. Jahrhunderts, als sie sich bereits in weitem Maße mit den Tolteken vereinigt hatten und der Rest von den Azteken besiegt wurde.
C'est à dire?
Bon, les Tchitchimèques ont été anéantis par les Aztèques. Et les Toltèques, semble-t-il, ensemble avec eux.
De l'autre côté:
Die toltekische Stadt Tula wurde vermutlich von den Chichimeken zerstört.
C'est à dire?
Que ce sont les Tchitchimèques qui ont détruit Tula, la capitale des Toltèques - selon ce qu'on présume.
Langues mixtèques
Sont sousdivisés en
Mixtèque de Coatzospan
Nombre de locuteurs
2 000 (en 2001)1
Gerfen, 2001, p. 449., de la source Gerfen, Chip, Nasalized Fricatives in Coatzospan Mixtec, International Journal of American Linguistics, 67:4, pp. 449-466, 2001.
Mixtèque de Tezoatlán
Nombre de locuteurs
6 200 (en 1990)1
Selon [Mixtec, Tezoatlán]
Trique de Chicahuaxtla
Nombre de locuteurs
6 000 (en 1982)1
Selon [Triqui, Chicahuaxtla]
Langues zapotèques
Nombre de locuteurs
441 7691
Ethnologue code « zap ». [Zapotec]

Pour "anéantis", les aztèques et les péruviens (Incas, c'étaient la dynastie, pas le peuple) semblent avoir une langue très bien préservée, chacun de ces peuples! Et pas mal d'autres, comme vu!

Presque dix millions, ce n'est pas mal, surtout que pas mal de gens sont devenus hispanophones au lieu de la langue ancestrale, sans pourtant périr, et pour nahuatl et ses 2 millions ou une et demie, faut savoir que l'Empire aztèque n'était pas si grand que ça.

Par contre, les conquistadors ont bel et bien anéanti les états, un peu comme les alliés avec Deutsches Reich et République de Salò en fin de II GM. Parce qu'on a considéré les états comme criminels, dans les deux cas.

Regardons l'article Noche Triste et ses premier et trois derniers paragraphes:

La Noche Triste (qui signifie « la triste nuit » en espagnol) est le nom donné à un épisode de la conquête de l'Empire aztèque par les Espagnols : dans la nuit du 30 juin au 1er juillet 1520, les troupes d'Hernán Cortés durent s’enfuir de Mexico-Tenochtitlan en concédant de lourdes pertes face aux Aztèques.

Et après ce presque annéantissement des conquistadors, au moins la troupe de Cortés:

À la suite de cette déroute, les survivants encore sous le commandement de Cortés durent s'enfuir tout en combattant les troupes aztèques qui les poursuivirent pendant plus d'une semaine pendant qu'ils contournaient le lac Texcoco par le nord (vers la lagune de Zumpango) pour prendre la direction de Tlaxcala vers l'est, où les Espagnols espéraient trouver refuge auprès de leurs alliés tlaxcaltèques.

Cette fuite s'acheva par la victoire inespérée et décisive des quelques centaines d'Espagnols sur près de 40 000 guerriers aztèques menés par le Cihuacóatl Matlatzincatzin, lors de la bataille d'Otumba, le 7 juillet 1520.

Une fois parvenu à Tlaxcala, Cortés reconstitua une vaste armée, majoritairement composée de guerriers autochtones hostiles aux Mexicas dont ils étaient ennemis ou tributaires, et lança le siège de Tenochtitlan, qu'il remporta le 13 août 1521. Cette date marque la fin effective de l'empire aztèque, même si le dernier tlatoani mexica, Cuauhtémoc, n'est exécuté qu'en 1525, après presque quatre ans d'emprisonnement.

Vous avez compris? Quand Cortés assiège Tenochtitlan, ce ne sont pas des espagnols, mais les autochthones, par exemple Tlaxcalas, qui sont la majorité des assiégeants, sous son commande.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Bibliothèque Audoux
St Wenceslas de Bohémie, Duc et Martyr

Saturday, September 24, 2016

The City Lights Went Out, Did They?

I met this allegation about the Middle Ages in the work of an otherwise rather well informed man, when it came to Middle Ages. TOFspot. Alias O'Floinn.

The date he gave for this was 406 AD.

Here is his post:
The TOF Spot : Deus vult! Part I: The Preludes

I'll be citing a little wiki, for most of the rest of this article. I'm not credible, but wiki is.

The Parisii, a sub-tribe of the Celtic Senones, inhabited the Paris area from around the middle of the 3rd century BC.[17][18] One of the area's major north-south trade routes crossed the Seine on the île de la Cité; this meeting place of land and water trade routes gradually became a town and an important trading centre.[19] The Parisii traded with many river towns as far away as the Iberian Peninsula, and minted their own coins for that purpose.[20]

Gold coins minted by the Parisii (1st century BC)

By No machine-readable author provided. World Imaging assumed (based on copyright claims). - No machine-readable source provided. Own work assumed (based on copyright claims)., CC BY-SA 3.0,

The Romans conquered the Paris Basin in 52 BC and,[21] after making the island a garrison camp, began extending their settlement in a more permanent way to Paris' Left Bank. The Gallo-Roman town was originally called Lutetia (more fully, Lutetia Parisiorum, "Lutetia of the Parisii"). It became a prosperous city with a forum, baths, temples, theatres, and an amphitheatr e.[22]

By the end of the Western Roman Empire, the town was known simply as Parisius in Latin and would later become Paris in French.[23] Christianity was introduced in the middle of the 3rd century AD. According to tradition, it was brought by Saint Denis, the first Bishop of Paris. When he refused to renounce his faith, he was beheaded on the hill which became known as the "Mountain of Martyrs" (Mons Martyrum), eventually "Montmartre". His burial place became an important religious shrine; the Basilica of Saint-Denis was built there and became the burial place of the French Kings.[24]

Clovis the Frank, the first king of the Merovingian dynasty, made the city his capital from 508. A gradual immigration by the Franks also occurred in Paris in the beginning of the Frankish domination of Gaul which created the Parisian Francien dialects. Fortification of the Île-de-France failed to prevent sacking by Vikings in 845 but Paris' strategic importance—with its bridg es preventing ships from passing—was established by successful defence in the Siege of Paris (885–86). In 987 Hugh Capet, Count of Paris (comte de Paris), Duke of the Franks (duc des Francs) was elected King of the Franks (roi des Franks). Under the rule of the Capetian kings, Paris gradually became the largest and most prosperous city in France.[24]

In Gallic times the city was important as a crossing point of the Loire. Becoming part of the Roman Empire during the 1st century AD, the city was named "Caesarodunum" ("hill of Caesar"). The name evolved in the 4th century when the original Gallic name, Turones, became first "Civitas Turonum" then "Tours". It was at this time that the amphitheatre of Tours, one of the five largest amphitheatres of the Empire, was built. Tours became the metropolis of the Roman province of Lugdunum towards 380–388, dominating the Loire Valley, Maine and Brittany. One of the outstanding figures of the history of the city was Saint Martin, second bishop who shared his coat with a naked beggar in Amiens. This incident and the importance of Martin in the medieval Christian West made Tours, and its position on the route of pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, a major centre during the Middle Ages.

Middle Ages

In the 6th century Gregory of Tours, author of the Ten Books of History, made his mark on the town by restoring the cathedral destroyed by a fire in 561. Saint Martin's monastery benefited from its inception, at the very start of the 6th century from patronage and support from the Frankish king, Clovis, which increased considerably the influence of the saint, the abbey and the city in Gaul. In the 9th century, Tours was at the heart of the Carolingian Rebirth, in particular because of Alcuin abbot of Marmoutier.

In 732 AD, Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi and a large army of Muslim horsemen from Al-Andalus advanced 500 kilometres (311 miles) deep into France, and were stopped at Tours by Charl es Martel and his infantry igniting the Battle of Tours. The outcome was defeat for the Muslims, preventing France from Islamic conquest. In 845, Tours repulsed the first attack of the Viking chief Hasting (Haesten). In 850, the Vikings settled at the mouths of the Seine and the Loire. Still led by Hasting, they went up the Loire again in 852 and sacked Angers, Tours and the abbey of Marmoutier.

During the Middle Ages, Tours consisted of two juxtaposed and competing centres. The "City" in the east, successor of the late Roman 'castrum', was composed of the archiepiscopal establishment (the cathedral and palace of the archbishops) and of the castle of Tours, seat of the authority of the Counts of Tours (later Counts of Anjou) and of the King of France. In the west, the "new city" structured around the Abbey of Saint Martin was freed from the control of the City during the 10th century (an enclosure was built towards 918) and became "Châteauneuf". This space, organized between Saint Martin and the Loire, became the economic centre of Tours. Between these two centres remained Varennes, vineyards and fields, little occupied except for the Abbaye Saint-Julien established on the banks of the Loire. The two centres were linked during the 14th century.

Tours became the capital of the county of Tours or Touraine, territory bitterly disputed between the counts of Blois and Anjou – the latter were victorious in the 11th century. It was the capital of France at the time of Louis XI, who had settled in the castle of Montils (today the castle of Plessis in La Riche, western suburbs of Tours), Tours and Touraine remained until the 16th century a permanent residence of the kings and court. The rebirth gave Tours and Touraine many private mansions and castles, joined together to some extent under the generic name of the Châteaux of the Loire. It is also at the time of Louis XI that the silk industry was intr oduced – despite difficulties, the industry still survives to this day.

It was during this time that Christianity first appeared in Marseille, as evidenced by catacombs above the harbour and records of Roman martyrs.[23] According to Provençal tradition, Mary Magdalen evangelised Marseille with her brother Lazarus. The diocese of Marseille was set up in the 1st century (it became the Archdiocese of Marseille in 1948).

Middle Ages and Renaissance

Marseille in 1575

By Frans Hogenberg -, Public Domain,

The city was not affected by the decline of the Roman Empire before the 8th century, as Marseille knew a stable situation, probably thanks to its efficient defensive walls inherited from the Phoceans. Even after the town fell into the hands of the Visigoths in the 5th century, the city became an important Christian intellectual center with people such as John Cassian, Salvian and Sidoni us Apollinaris. Marseille even knew a golden age in the 6th century, when it became a major commercial center in the Mediterranean Sea. Late Antiquity continued until the 7th century in Marseille, with Phocean and Roman infrastructures still in use (forums, baths). Marseille's economic activities and prosperity ended suddenly with the Charles Martel attacks in 739, when his armies punished the city for rejecting the governor he had established a few years earlier. The city did not develop again before the 10th century, as it knew 150 years of recurring attacks from the Greeks and the Saracens.[citation needed]

The city regained much of its wealth and trading power when it was revived in the 10th century by the Counts of Provence.[citation needed] The Counts of Provence allowed Marseille, governed by a consul, great autonomy until the rule of Raymond Berengar IV of Provence. Marseille initially resisted his assertion of control, but acknowledged his suzerainty in 1243.

The Christians in Lyon were martyred for their beliefs under the reigns of various Roman emperors, most notably Marcus Aurelius and Septimus Severus. Local saints from this period include Blandina (Blandine), Pothinus (Pothin), and Epipodius (Épipode), among others. In the second century AD, the great Christian bishop of Lyon was the Easterner, Irenaeus.

Place Carnot, Lyon,_Lyons,_France-LCCN2001698425.tif

By Photochrom Print Collection - Library of CongressCatalog:, Public Domain,

Burgundian refugees fleeing the destruction of Worms by the Huns in 437 were resettled by the military commander of the west, Aëtius, at Lugdunum. This became the capital of the new Burgundian kingdom in 461.

In 843, by the Treaty of Verdun, Lyon, with the country beyond the Saône, went to Lothair I. It later was made part of the Kingdom of Arles. Lyon did not come under French control until the 14th century.

Fernand Braudel remarked, "Historians of Lyon are not sufficiently aware of the bi-polarity between Paris and Lyon, which is a constant structure in French development...from the late Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution".[10] In the late 15th century, the fairs introduced by Italian merchants made Lyon the economic countinghouse of France. (Even the Bourse (treasury), built in 1749, resembled a public bazaar where accounts were settled in the open air.) When international banking moved to Genoa, then Amsterdam, Lyon remained the banking centre of France.

In 1572, Lyon was a scene of mass violence by Catholics against Protestant Huguenots in the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacres.

In historical times, around 300 BCE it was the settlement of a Celtic tribe, the Bituriges Vivisci, who named the town Burdigala, probably of Aquitanian origin. The name Bourde is still the name of a river south of the city.

In 107 BCE, the Battle of Burdigala was fought by the Romans who were def ending the Allobroges, a Gallic tribe allied to Rome, and the Tigurini led by Divico. The Romans were defeated and their commander, the consul Lucius Cassius Longinus, was killed in the action.

The city fell under Roman rule around 60 BC, its importance lying in the commerce of tin and lead towards Rome. Later it became capital of Roman Aquitaine, flourishing especially during the Severan dynasty (3rd century). In 276 it was sacked by the Vandals. Further ravage was brought by the same Vandals in 409, the Visigoths in 414 and the Franks in 498, beginning a period of obscurity for the city.

Merovingian tremisses minted in Bordeaux by the Church of Saint-Étienne, late 6th century. British Museum.

In the late 6th century, the city re-emerged as the seat of a county and an archdiocese within the Merovingian kingdom of the Franks, but royal Frankish power was never strong. The city started to play a regional role as a major urban center on the fringes of the newly founded Frankish Duchy of Vasconia. Around 585, a certain Gallactorius is cited as count of Bordeaux and fighting the Basques.

The city was plundered by the troops of Abd er Rahman in 732 after storming the fortified city and overwhelming the Aquitanian garrison. Duke Eudes mustered a force ready to engage the Umayyads outside Bordeaux, eventually taking on them in the Battle of the River Garonne somewhere near the river Dordogne, described as taking a heavy death toll. After duke Eudes's defeat, the Aquitanian duke could still save part of its troops and keep his grip on Aquitaine after the Battle of Poitiers.

In 735, the Aquitanian duke Hunald led a rebellion after his father Eudes's death, at which Charles responded by sending an expedition that captured and plundered Bordeaux again, but it was not retaine d for long. The following year, the Frankish commander descended again over Aquitaine, but clashed in battle with the Aquitanians and left to take on hostile Burgundian authorities and magnates. In 745, Aquitaine faced yet another expedition by Charles' sons Pepin and Carloman against Hunald, the Aquitanian princeps (or duke) strong in Bordeaux. Hunald was defeated, and his son Waifer replaced him, who in turn confirmed Bordeaux as the capital city (along with Bourges in the north).

During the last stage of the war against Aquitaine (760–768), it was one of Waifer's last important strongholds to fall to King Pepin the Short's troops. Next to Bordeaux, Charlemagne built the fortress of Fronsac (Frontiacus, Franciacus) on a hill across the border with the Basques (Wascones), where Basque commanders came over to vow loyalty to him (769).

In 778, Seguin (or Sihimin) was appointed count of Bordeaux, probably undermining the power of the Duke Lupo, and possibly leading t o the Battle of Roncevaux Pass that very year. In 814, Seguin was made Duke of Vasconia, but he was deposed in 816 for failing to suppress or sympathise with a Basque rebellion. Under the Carolingians, sometimes the Counts of Bordeaux held the title concomitantly with that of Duke of Vasconia. They were meant to keep the Basques in check and defend the mouth of the Garonne from the Vikings when the latter appeared c. 844 in the region of Bordeaux. In Autumn 845, count Seguin II marched on the Vikings assaulting Bordeaux and Saintes, but was captured and put to death. There are no bishops mentioned during the whole 8th century and part of the 9th in Bordeaux.

Oh, figures! TOFSpot is partial to Bordeaux, where there were indeed from time to time ravages!

Next stop Poitiers
Poitiers was founded by the Celtic tribe of the Pictones and was known as the oppidum Lemonum before Roman influence. The name is said to have come from the Celtic word for e lm, Lemo. After Roman influence took over, the town became known as Pictavium, or later "Pictavis", after the original Pictones inhabitants themselves.

There is a rich history of archeological finds from the Roman era in Poitiers. In fact until 1857 Poitiers hosted the ruins of a vast Roman amphitheatre, which was larger than that of Nîmes. Remains of Roman baths, built in the 1st century and demolished in the 3rd century, were uncovered in 1877.

In 1879 a burial-place and tombs of a number of Christian martyrs were discovered on the heights to the south-east of the town. The names of some of the Christians had been preserved in paintings and inscriptions. Not far from these tombs is a huge dolmen (the Pierre Levée), which is 6.7 metres (22 ft) long, 4.9 metres (16 ft) broad and 2.1 metres (7 ft) high, and around which used to be held the great fair of Saint Luke.

The Romans also built at least three aqueducts. This extensive ensemble of Roman constructions suggests Poitiers was a town of first importance, possibly even the capital of the Roman province of Gallia Aquitania during the 2nd century.

As Christianity was made official and gradually introduced across the Roman Empire during the 3rd and 4th centuries, the first bishop of Poitiers from 350 to 367, Hilary of Poitiers or Saint Hilarius, proceeded to evangelize the town. Exiled by Constantius II, he risked death to return to Poitiers as Bishop after discovering that the Christian "Eastern" Church were not heretical as believed in Rome, but had, rather, reached many of the same conclusions about the Holy Trinity as had the Western Church. The first foundations of the Baptistère Saint-Jean can be traced to that era of open Christian evangelization. He was named "Doctor of The Church" by Pope Pius IX.

In the 4th century, a thick wall 6m wide and 10m high was built around the town. It was 2.5 km (2 mi) long and stood lower on the naturally defe nded east side and at the top of the promontory. Around this time, the town began to be known as Poitiers.

Fifty years later Poitiers fell into the hands of the Arian Visigoths, and became one of the principal residences of their kings. Visigoth King Alaric II was defeated by Clovis I at Vouillé, not far from Poitiers, in 507, and the town thus came under Frankish dominion.

During most of the Early Middle Ages, the town of Poitiers took advantage of its defensive tactical site and of its location, which was far from the centre of Frankish power. As the seat for an évêché (bishop) since the 4th century, the town was a centre of some importance and the capital of the Poitou county. At the height of their power, the Counts of Poitiers governed a large domain, including both Aquitaine and Poitou.

The town was often referred to as Poictiers, a name commemorated in warships of the Royal Navy, after the battle of Poi(c)tiers.[6] The first decisive victory of a Christian army over a Muslim power, the Battle of Tours, was fought by Charles Martel's men in the vicinity of Poitiers on 10 October 732. For many historians, it was one of the world's pivotal moments.[7]

Eleanor of Aquitaine frequently resided in the town, which she embellished and fortified, and in 1199 entrusted with communal rights. In 1152 she married the future King Henry II of England in Poitiers Cathedral.

During the Hundred Years' War, the Battle of Poitiers, an English victory, was fought near the town of Poitiers on 19 September 1356. Later in the war In 1418, under duress, the royal parliament moved from Paris to Poitiers, where it remained in exile until the Plantagenets finally withdrew from the capital in 1436. During this interval, in 1429 Poitiers was the site of Joan of Arc's formal inquest.

The University of Poitiers was founded in 1431. During and after the Reformation, John Calvin had numerous convert s in Poitiers and the town had its share of the violent proceedings which underlined the Wars of Religion throughout France.

In 1569 Poitiers was defended by Gui de Daillon, comte du Lude, against Gaspard de Coligny, who after an unsuccessful bombardment and seven weeks, retired from a siege he had laid to the town.

Rouen was founded by the Gaulish tribe of Veliocasses, who controlled a large area in the lower Seine valley, which today retains a trace of their name as the Vexin. The Gauls named the settlement Ratumacos[1] and the Romans called it Rotomagus.[2] Roman Rotomagus was the second city of Gallia Lugdunensis, after Lugdunum (Lyon). After the reorganization of the empire by Diocletian, Rouen became the chief city of the divided province of Gallia Lugdunensis II and reached the peak of its Roman development, with an amphitheatre and thermae, the foundations of which remain today. In the 5th century, it became the seat of a bishopric and later a capital of Merovingian Neustria.

The Middle Ages

After the first Viking incursion into the lower valley of the Seine in 841,[3] they went on to overrun Rouen, and some of them settled and founded a colony led by Rollo (Hrolfr), who was nominated to be count of Rouen by King Charles in 911. In the 10th century Rouen became the capital of the Duchy of Normandy and the residence of the dukes, until William the Conqueror established his castle at Caen.

During the early 12th century the city's population reached 30,000.[4] In 1150, Rouen received its founding charter, which permitted self-government. During the 12th century, Rouen was probably the site of a Jewish yeshiva. At that time, about 6,000 Jews lived in the town, comprising about 20% of the total population[citation needed]. The well-preserved remains of a medieval Jewish building, that could be a yeshiva, were discovered in the 1970s under the Rouen Law Courts.

Les premières traces de fréquentation du site de Beauvais datent de 65 000 avant notre ère. Camp fortifié par les Romains, Beauvais prend, au Ier siècle, le nom de Caesaromagus : le Marché de César.

Devenue Bellovacum, la ville gallo-romaine fut détruite à nouveau par les invasions barbares vers 275. Elle est reconstruite au IVe siècle et dotée de fortifications. Les remparts forment un rectangle de 260 m sur 400 m, qui protègent une superficie de 10 ha27. La ville est ouverte à l'est par la porte du Châtel et à l'ouest par la porte du Limaçon. Chaque angle est occupé par une imposante tour carrée dont une seule est encore visible de nos jours à proximité de la cathédrale, un dallage spécial a été posé pour signaler l'emplacement des remparts et des tours. Tous les 20 mètres, des tours saillantes renforçaient les murailles.

En 328, l’empereur Constantin Ier, qui avait autorisé la pratique du christianisme, visite les vétérans de son armée dans le castrum de Bellovacis. C'est le début de la christianisation de la région, et la source du pouvoir des évêques de Beauvais.

Moyen Âge

Maison du XVe siècle levée par Viollet-le-Duc dans son Dictionnaire raisonné de l'architecture française du XIe au XIe siècle, édité vers 1856.

Par Eugène Viollet le Duc — Dictionnaire raisonné de l'architecture française du XIe au XIe siècle, Domaine public,

La cathédrale de Beauvais.

Par James Mitchell, CC BY-SA 2.0,

Dès le début du Moyen Âge, l'autorité des évêques de Beauvais grandit en même temps que croît la nouvelle foi. L'évêché de Beauvais est considéré comme un poste d'autant plus prestigieux qu'il bénéficie de revenus considérables. Beauvais est à un carrefour de routes commerciales et, qui plus est, l'évêque cumule les pouvoirs religieux et politiques, on nomme cela un évêque-comte. Ce titre fait de lui le vrai maître de la cité car il fait partie des pairs de France, personnes les plus importantes dans la hiérarchie médiévale avec les deux autres évêques-comtes, les trois évêques-ducs et les six ducs des pairies de France, juste en dessous du roi.

La commune se crée très tôt, au XIe siècle. Elle devient prospère et acquiert progressivement des droits pour promouvoir son industrie. Pragmatique, elle prend régulièrement le parti du roi de France contre l'évêque et s'appuie sur le textile pour asseoir sa puissance financière. À cette époque, le drap de Beauvais est exporté jusqu'en Orient et les ateliers se multiplient. Faisant partie d'une « Ligue » de quinze « villes drapantes », Beauvais en est le troisième pôle par ordre d'importance. Les artisans travaillent toutes sortes de laine, y compris les plus fines, importées de Londres. Les corporations s'enrichissent de corps de métiers de plus en plus diversifiés : teinturiers, finisseurs, tondeurs, apprêteurs… Un groupe de 80 familles régente les ouvriers. La croissance économique de Beauvais est alors importante : c’est, dès cette époque, une ville riche proche de son âge d’or. Les maires de cette période sont la plupart du temps issus du cercle étroit de ces négociants. La hiérarchie est stricte et les querelles sociales soumises à l'autorité du roi qui se charge, s'il le faut, de contraindre l'évêque. De cette époque, date la Basse-Œuvre, qui, si elle est bien l'ancienne cathédrale carolingienne, n'est pas la première « cathédrale » construite à Beauvais. Grâce à des fouilles, on a pu dater son édification de la deuxième moitié du Xe siècle. La Basse-Œuvre comportait diverses annexes contemporaines de l'église. Des fresques devaient animer ses murs. On en a retrouvé divers fragments, dont une tête d'homme, d'une qualité remarquable. Rare témoin en France de l'architecture carolingienne encore conservé, l'édifice est construit suivant les techniques de l'époque, avec des remplois gallo-romains.

À la même époque, apparaissent les ordres mendiants dont les couvents s'élèvent à l'est de la ville, en plein quartier ouvrier. C'est vers cette époque que datent le s maladreries Saint-Lazare et Saint-Antoine. Au départ dépourvus de biens, ces ordres s'enrichissent progressivement et jouent un rôle non négligeable dans la cité.

Oh, English might be preferred?
Beauvais was known to the Romans by the Gallo-Roman name of Caesaromagus (magos is Common Celtic for "field"). The post-Renaissance Latin rendering is Bellovacum from the Belgic tribe the Bellovaci, whose capital it was. In the ninth century it became a countship, which about 1013 passed to the bishops of Beauvais, who became peers of France from the twelfth century.[1] At the coronations of kings the Bishop of Beauvais wore the royal mantle and went, with the Bishop of Langres, to raise the king from his throne to present him to the people.

De Bello Gallico II 13 reports that as Julius Caesar was approaching a fortified town called Bratuspantium in the land of the Bellovaci, its inhabitants surrendered to him when he was about 5 Roman miles away. Its name is Gaulish for "place where judgements are made", from *bratu-spantion. Some say that Bratuspantium is Beauvais. Others theorize that it is Vendeuil-Caply or Bailleul sur Thérain.[2][3]

From 1004 to 1037, the Count of Beauvais was Odo II, Count of Blois.

In a charter dated 1056/1060, Eudo of Brittany granted land "in pago Belvacensi" (Beauvais, Picardy) to the Abbey of Angers Saint-Aubin (see Albinus of Angers).[a]

In 1346 the town had to defend itself against the English, who again besieged it in 1433. The siege which it endured in 1472 at the hands of the Duke of Burgundy, was rendered famous by the heroism of the town's women, under the leadership of Jeanne Hachette, whose memory is still celebrated by a procession on 27 June (the feast of Sainte Angadrême), during which women take precedence over men.

The holy district of Laon, which rises a hundred metres above the otherwise flat Picardy plain,[1] has always held strategic importance. In the time of Julius Caesar there was a Gallic village named Bibrax where the Remis (inhabitants of the country round Reims) had to meet the onset of the confederated Belgae.[2] Whatever may have been the precise locality of that battlefield, Laon was fortified by the Romans, and successively checked the invasions of the Franks, Burgundians, Vandals, Alans and Huns. At that time it was known as Alaudanum or Lugdunum Clavatum.

Archbishop Remigius of Reims, who baptised Clovis, was born in the Laonnais, and it was he who, at the end of the fifth century, instituted the bishopric of Laon. Thenceforward Laon was one of the principal towns of the kingdom of the Franks, and the possession of it was often disputed. Charles the Bald had enriched its church with the gift of very numerous domains. In about 847 the Irish philosopher John Scotus Eriugena appeared at the court of Charles the Bald, and was appointed head of the palace scho ol. Eriugena spent the rest of his days in France, probably at Paris and Laon.[3]

After the fall of the Carolingians Laon took the part of Charles of Lorraine, their heir, and Hugh Capet only succeeded in making himself master of the town by the connivance of the bishop, who, in return for this service, was made second ecclesiastical peer of the kingdom.

Early in the twelfth century the communes of France set about emancipating themselves, and the history of the commune of Laon is one of the richest and most varied. Anselm of Laon's school for theology and exegesis rapidly became the most famous in Europe. The citizens had profited by a temporary absence of Bishop Gaudry to secure from his representatives a communal charter, but he, on his return, purchased from the king of France the revocation of this document, and recommenced his oppressions. The consequence was a revolt, in which the episcopal palace was burnt and the bishop and several of his partisans were pu t to death on 25 April 1112. The fire spread to the cathedral, and reduced it to ashes. Uneasy at the result of their victory, the rioters went into hiding outside the town, which was anew pillaged by the people of the neighbourhood, eager to avenge the death of their bishop.

The king alternately intervened in favour of the bishop and of the inhabitants till 1239. After that date the liberties of Laon were no more contested till 1331, when the commune was abolished. During the Hundred Years' War it was attacked and taken by the Burgundians, who gave it up to the English, to be retaken by Charles VII after his coronation. Under the League, Laon took the part of the Leaguers, and was taken by Henry IV.

Before the Roman conquest of northern Gaul, Reims, founded circa 80 BC as *Durocorteron ("round fortress"; in Latin: Durocortōrum), served as the capital of the tribe of the Remi — whose name the town would subsequently echo. In the course of Julius Caesar's conquest of Gaul (58–51 BC), the Remi allied themselves with the Romans, and by their fidelity throughout the various Gallic insurrections secured the special favour of the imperial power. At its height in Roman times the city had a population in the range of 30,000 - 50,000 or perhaps up to 100,000.[2]

Christianity had become established in the city by 260, at which period Saint Sixtus of Reims founded the bishopric of Reims. The consul Jovinus, an influential supporter of the new faith, repelled the Alamanni who invaded Champagne in 336; but the Vandals captured the city in 406 and slew Bishop Nicasius; and in 451 Attila the Hun put Reims to fire and sword.

In 496 – ten years after Clovis, King of the Salian Franks, won his victory at Soissons (486) — Remigius, the bishop of Reims, baptized him using the oil of the sacred phial – purportedly brought from heaven by a dove for the baptism of Clovis and subsequently preserved in the Abbey of Saint-Remi. Fo r centuries the events at the crowning of Clovis I became a symbol used by the monarchy to claim the divine right to rule.

Meetings of Pope Stephen II (752–757) with Pepin the Short, and of Pope Leo III (795–816) with Charlemagne (died 814), took place at Reims; and here Pope Stephen IV crowned Louis the Debonnaire in 816. Louis IV gave the city and countship of Reims to the archbishop Artaldus in 940. Louis VII (reigned 1137–1180) gave the title of duke and peer to William of Champagne, archbishop from 1176 to 1202, and the archbishops of Reims took precedence over the other ecclesiastical peers of the realm.

By the 10th century Reims had become a centre of intellectual culture. Archbishop Adalberon (in office 969 to 988), seconded by the monk Gerbert (afterwards (from 999 to 1003) Pope Silvester II), founded schools which taught the classical "liberal arts". (Adalberon also played a leading role in the dynastic revolution which elevated the Capetian dynasty in th e place of the Carolingians.)

The archbishops held the important prerogative of the consecration of the kings of France – a privilege which they exercised (except in a few cases) from the time of Philippe II Augustus (anointed 1179, reigned 1180–1223) to that of Charles X (anointed 1825). Louis VII granted the city a communal charter in 1139. The Treaty of Troyes (1420) ceded it to the English, who had made a futile attempt to take it by siege in 1360; but French patriots expelled them on the approach of Joan of Arc, who in 1429 had Charles VII consecrated in the cathedral. Louis XI cruelly suppressed a revolt at Reims, caused in 1461 by the salt tax. During the French Wars of Religion the city sided with the Catholic League (1585), but submitted to Henri IV after the battle of Ivry (1590).

Summing it up, if a city was there in Antiquity previous to 406 and was not Bordeaux, and was in Gaul, it was probably there in the centuries between Antiquity and us too. Feel free to continue the search on the wickipeejuh and perhaps also la ouiquipédie for Nice, Antibes, Vienne, Trier, Cologne, I'll cite you one poignant passage from Vienna:

Evidence has been found of continuous habitation since 500 BC, when the site of Vienna on the Danube River was settled by the Celts. In 15 BC, the Romans fortified the frontier city they called Vindobona to guard the empire against Germanic tribes to the north.

These Roman cities which are there today are as continuous as the Catholic Church!

Saying "the city lights went out" is part of the kind of mythology which says Medieval Church did not continue the Apostolic one in straight succession.

One which is far less credible than Odyssey and Iliad!

Hans Georg Lundahl
University Library
Our Lady of Mercy

Now, Octave of All Saints in 2018 (8.XI.2018), I wrote another work, linking back here:

Great Bishop of Geneva! : Deinippus in Corinth ...

It deals, by quoting, at the end, of why the Medieval arrangement was a fairly good one, and the quote is from Emily Kittell-Queller./HGL

How Not to Explain Latin / Romance shift - and My Correction

Quoting an article:*

All five of these languages** incorporate grammar, tenses and specific intricacies from Latin. Not coincidentally, each language developed in former territories of the Western Roman Empire. When that empire failed, Latin died, and the new languages were born. Part of the reason that Latin passed out of common usage is because, as a language, it's incredibly complex. Classical Latin is highly inflected, meaning that nearly every word is potentially modified based on tense, case, voice, aspect, person, number, gender and mood. With no central power promoting and standardizing usage of Classical Latin, it gradually passed away from everyday usage. Vulgar Latin, essentially a simplified version of the mother tongue, survived for a while but diverged more and more as it folded in various local languages. By the end of the sixth century, people from different sections of the former empire could no longer understand each other. Latin had died as a living language."

Would a man from Bombay understand the English from Ozark region?

Is English dead because it is no longer strictly speaking unified? Or was it dead until Television and Cinema revived its pronunciation unity?


Also, Classic Chinese is not dead because a Cantonese and a Mandarin speaker from Peking pronounce it diversely.

Nor Classic Arabic, because Egypt, Iraq and Morocco have diverging pronunciation, probably more so before Al Jazeera got going.

In order for a written language to die, it does not only to have pronunciation divergences making mutual understanding impossible***

It does not only to have substandard changes from the state it enjoyed during codification of standard.

One also has to exchange the written standard.

And this does not happen by gradual change.

It happened in these steps:

  • Previous to Alcuin, Latin of Roman Empire had become an "old written language" - one in which the relation between pronunciation and spelling of a word was no longer straight forward, like today English, Irish, Greek.
  • Meanwhile, Latin as used by Barbarians learning it as a foreign language had more or less preserved original pronuncitation, or the one current when each people had started using Latin as a Church language (and in later cases, perhaps tended to simplify the quirks away from spelling).
  • The deviations from writing in pronunciation being different in diverse parts of Romance world, and worst in Gaul (at least as far as West is concerned), some visiting priests in 8th Century could not understand totally the liturgic language of Gaul.
  • This led to a decision to reform Latin pronunciation in Gaul, for coherence over the Church. Alcuin did this reform in 800.
  • So, previous to 800, in Gaul, there was one pronunciation and one spelling. After him, there was still one spelling and now two pronunciations, the everyday and the liturgic ones.
  • The liturgic pronunciation which was perfectly understandable to priests from the rest of Roman world, was no longer so to the people. Add a few endings no longer in use (like the genitives in -i and -orum), OK. Omit article because it wasn't used in older times, OK. But pronouncing EVERY word different from what you were doing? No, the people were no longer investing learning efforts to keep up with that.
  • Thirteen years later, 813, this leads to a decree one must after Gospel reading (in the newly more Classical and liturgic pronunciation) add an explanation of it, including a translation or exposé of it in the popular language (whatever the pronunication was, locally, basically).
  • Priests trying to prepare for this new performance were now free to omit disused case endings (like genitives in -i and -orum) or in certain parts aleady perhaps all case endings except presence or absence of -s altogether, in order to read the "people's version" from the pulpit too. But these new spellings were occasional, and only partly crystallised. Now, from one writing and two pronuncitations, you start getting two pronunciations and two writings. But in court probably the people's pronunciation (with some moderation, if lower classes had already lost final vowels) and the Latin spelling of it were still used conjointly. However, a prince growing up in the German speaking East would probably be learning Latin in a more ecclesiastic way, more like Alcuin.
  • In Strassburg a prince growing up among German speakers and not being fluent in the Latin of the Gaulish popular pronunciation had to swear an oath before nobles using precisely that. Clerks now used the spelling for their sermon notes to help him be understood.
  • And now, slowly, the old coupling died off and about two hundred years later or a few decades earlier, the one spelling went with the one pronunciation and the other with the other one, they were two separate languages. Courts liking poetry and new pronunciation making old metres less and less likely to be rhythmic had something to do with this. Oldest works apart Strassburg Oaths in newer spelling (by now much further from Latin than the Oaths) were poems, like a sequence of Saint Eulalia.
  • This process happened about 200 years later for each stage in Spain and Italy.
  • Roumania took another road and had Church Slavonic as liturgic language up to 1500's. This means that the divergence of Walachic pronunciation from older Latin one was not steadied by any reference to Latin texts. Hence, Roumanian or Walachic is further off from Latin than other ones, in vocabulary. Example: "amator hominum" - an attribute of God in Eastern liturgy - is in Roumanian liturgy "iubitor ominilor". The verb stem behind the verbal noun is not from Latin amare, but from Slavonic liubiti. These and other things are so, because back then Roumanian started all over as a written language, it had been developing purely orally for centuries.

Part of the reason that Latin passed out of common usage is because, as a language, it's incredibly complex. Classical Latin is highly inflected, meaning that nearly every word is potentially modified based on tense, case, voice, aspect, person, number, gender and mood. With no central power promoting and standardizing usage of Classical Latin, it gradually passed away from everyday usage.

There is no such thing as a gradual passing away of a language, except if it is gradually replaced by a totally different one.

Irish has during 19th C in many places, including Baile Áth Clíath / Dublin been gradually replaced by English.

But you can't say Latin was "gradually replaced by French" in northern Gaul, any more than you can say "Middle English was gradually replaced by Modern English" in England. As most standard non-Latin form of writing, Old English or Anglo-Saxon was replaced by Norman-French, after the Conquest, though some places the process took a century to complete (latest entries in Anglo-Saxon Chronicle are from 100 years after Conquest or so), and then French-Norman was replaced by English, after the plague.

But English was not replaced by English when it evolved from a "Middle English" state to a "Modern English" state.

English uniting an essentially Middle English spelling with a Modern Pronunciation would be replaced by two new languages only if:

  • 1) Old pronunciation of Chaucer were revived, so that "knight" and "night" were pronounced as if Germans spelled it "Knicht, Nicht";
  • 2) New pronunciation was respelled, so that what Germans would spell "Neid" was, for both words, perhaps from Welsh spelling, "naet".
  • 3) Fluency in the old combination became superfluous, since less relevant than the ones in either or both new combinations.

But what Latin was like in Gaul by the time of Alcuin is, a bit, as English is now. A bit more as if English had retained its basic spelling, not from Chaucer but from King Alfred.

Or, like what Greek was when written as Katharevousa and spoken in very various shades of Dhimotiki, starting with real Katharevousa pronounced like Dhimotiki, that is with Itacism. Or like what Church Slavonic is, namely pronounced differently by Serbs and by Russians and by Ukraineans.

Hans Georg Lundahl
in Nanterre University Library
on Feast of Our Lady of Mercy

* Linking:

Seeker : Politics : Sep 18, 2016 01:00 AM ET
How Did Latin Become A Dead Language?
by Jules Suzdaltsev

** Listing:

In historical terms, Latin didn't die so much as it changed -- into French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Romanian.

One could add, Provençal, Catalan, Galician, Sardinian, Rheto-romance or Ladin - with some question marks on whether Catalan, Provençal and Ladin are three different or same language. At least there are three standards. These other three to five are indeed regional, not national languages.

*** Before schools and TV, a Scanian and someone from Norrland could probably not understand each other, unless both were fluent in a standard version, not their native tongue. Especially not if growing up as farmers.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Tradition, Tradition and Tradition - Featuring Tramps

J. P. Holding, alias tektontv youtube channel has given a rather goodish show about "who wrote the Gospels".

In three criteria, he has managed to avoid naming by name my main criterium, namely tradition of authorship.

His three criteria are:

  • 1) internal attribution (like a title page or a colophon or a title, "Annals of Tacitus" or "Gospel According to Saint John");

  • 2) external attribution, like other authors citing a work as written by such an author;

  • 3) internal evidence of [style and] content, like what is written in a work being consistent with the author claimed to have written it.

    • 3 a) subjective evaluation, like author x being a person known for things opposed to or inconsistent with a work y falsely attributed, however care not to put a person in a box;

    • 3 b) objective factors like anachronism playing against an author being the real one.

He has not noted that all the three factors, and the two sub factors of factor three too, are tradition.

There is internal attribution, but that is the tradition of manuscript.

There is external attribution, but the most thorough such is from an entire tradition (such as ALL Church + most schismatics and slight heretics considering the four Gospels genuine, everyone who mentions them accepts them, no one who mentions them disagrees with authorship) - and those who discard that will settle for tradition piecemeal. Such and such an early author considering the authorship as genuine is accepted as early - because his books are considered genuinely attributed, because of tradition - and as trustworthy - a Church Father credibly speaking the mind of the Church, for instance, again because of tradition.

There is consistency between author and content.

But what we know from an author beside the contents of his books is known from tradition.

There is consistency between period of author and content (Tacitus did not, like JPH pointed out, say Nero took chicken from a fridge and put it in microwave ovens), but what we know about period of author we mainly know from ... tradition. In the case of fridges and microwave ovens from a tradition which says these were invented (consulting wiki for these traditional truths) as to DOMESTIC fridge (not earliest one) 1876 by Carl von Linde, the microwave oven was ready for use (but not much used) by 1975. From family tradition I know my maternal grandparents (1900-1976, 1911-1993) had no fridge when small and the posh stepfather had no microwave oven while I was in his home (which ceased sth like 72, 73 or so).

If there are more than one tradition, which agree, so much the better.

If there are more than one tradition to decide between, that leaves some leaway for personal judgement.

For authorship of the Gospels, there is NOT more than one tradition to decide between, at least as far as Synoptics are concerned. For authorship of Fourth Gospel, we can be sure there are two early claims, one NOT getting the backing of subsequent tradition, namely Cerinthus, one getting it, namely John.

When it comes to external attribution, J. P. Holding is somewhat averse to testimony by ... tramps.

Who Authored the New Testament, Part 2

At 2:16 (if not even earlier) in the video, he shows a tramp (maybe one prison inmate or ex such, he is prison guardian, stood model, maybe he paid a tramp a handsome sum) with a cardboard saying "don't buy the lie, Elmo wrote it".

Referring to one Elmo Thudpucker, proposed alternative author for the book The Case for Christ, A Journalist's Personal Investigation of the Evidence for Jesus (most accepted author being Lee Strobel).

I should hope this adverse opinion of ... tramps ... does not hold of claims about ... tramps ... writing a book.

Because normally speaking, he is on the side of St John writing the Fourth Gospel. So am I. However, we know from a life of St John (considered genuine though not canonic by the tradition we have the authrship "John" from) that John was at times ... a tramp.

  • He lived without money, like St Francis of Assisi, and he punished discioples who wanted back the money they had given away when becoming his disciples (note, this is for so to speak consecrated tramps, like him or St Francis, ordinary lay tramps do have a right to try to get money, including by writing).

  • He stayed over night in an inn where the bed had bed bugs. It was an abandoned inn, and thanks to a miracle he slept tight, but still, who but a ... tramp ... would have been sleeping in that inn anyway?

Anyway, if a tramp on a cardboard has a text like:


First of all you can go to http://NOV9BLOGG9.BLOGSPOT.COM and to http://FILOLOHIKA.BLOGSPOT.COM and check if there is any article in ENG (as in English) on both and any article in FR (as in français) on both. If the blog is good, it doesn't matter if you get the tip from the tramp for your enjoyment - but you might want to give the tramp a tip for giving you the tip.

Second, if you ask the tramp if the blog is his, and he says yes, there are ways of checking that which are not totally blocked by the fact he is a tramp.

For instance, when two young volunteers from Bismarck NY or POtsdam NY were at the soup kitchen of St Nicolas du Chardonnet in Paris, it seems someone had wanted them to make a check up on the matter.

I promised them the recipe of Knödel on my recipes blog, and though I was delayed, here it is:

Recipes from Home and Abroad : Knödel / Knoedel / Knedlici are NOT REALLY dumplings

Similarily, the parish St Ambrose had a volunteer or employee who was interested in Swedish herring recipes, on Christmas eve I gave such, links to Swedish online recipes, my own translation in French:

Recipes from Home and Abroad : Hareng à la suédoise

On top of that blog, just under the blog title or header, we see a button "Blogs/bloggar". If we click it we find a series of blogs of same author (dedication to the Blessed Virgin mentions "haec bloggata et alia mea scripta", "these blogged things and other writings of mine", so the author of all of these blogs may be presumed to be the same).

[Not including links, go to page for them.]

Die 8vo Dec. anni ecclesiastici iam MMXI, anni civilis autem MMX, dedicavi haec bloggata et alia mea scripta ad quam vincula do ad Cor Immaculatum Mariæ eâ occasione quâ parœchia Scti Nicolai in Cardoneto renovavit dedicationem parœchiæ

Creation vs. Evolution, somewhere else, Great Bishop of Geneva!

Notes/noter/Noten & théorie musicale English/French:

General Index

Polyglotta Sw/Eng/Fr ...:

Index I, Index II
continued on/continué sur/fortsatt på:

Trivium, Quadrivium 7 c.

Correspondence de / of / van Hans-Georg Lundahl

New blog on the kid

HGL's Facebook writings

MSN Group Antimodernism in memoriam


Recipes from Home and Abroad

If you did go to NOV9BLOGG9.BLOGSPOT.COM you will know it has a title matching one of above, namely New blog on the kid. As for FILOLOHIKA.BLOGSPOT.COM, its full title is Φιλολoγικά/Philologica, but it may be identified by the sole Latin title, as in list above.

And if you click things on the "Blogs/bloggar" page, you will also know that New blog on the kid has a URL matching NOV9BLOGG9.BLOGSPOT.COM on the cardboard of that tramp, and that Philologica has a URL matching the FILOLOHIKA.BLOGSPOT.COM on the cardboard of the tramp.

Of course all this could be faked (and so could the match between the signature of MANY a blog post with the name in the passport of the tramp!), but I think JPH somewhere said that that is inherent in authorship tests anyway. And that the onus probandi is on the one doubting the authorship.

If you take the note that content on blogs is inconsistent with being written by a tramp, how about noting not just authors but also tramps should not be put in a box?

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Sts Morris, Exupéry, Candid,
Victor, Innocent, Vital and Companions
Martyrs of Theban Legion

Saturday, September 17, 2016

How Historically Accurate was Iliad? A Guess of it being VERY accurate in circumstances

In 2013 Jack wrote Lita:
[ ]

And there are others who point out that if the Bible has a similar basis in fact to other ancient historical records such as, say, Homer’s Iliad, then it’s hardly a very good basis for determining the development of life on earth.

Why exactly so?

What is exactly unhistoric about the Iliad?

Details of small importance (which one can expect in merely human tradition), like mixing arms from own to those of recorded time (bronze arms more likely to be genuine than iron arms)?

Such small detail will not overthrow the overall history.

Choice of authorial viewpoint (in the tenth year, concentrating on a story of Achilles)?

Unless the story chosen is unhistoric (which would remain to be proven), this does not really affect historic accuracy of story related. It could affect accuracy of historical viewpoint - if biassed (which this one is not, story giving equal importance to Achilles and Hector) - unless there were balancing materials.

Figure of Hector, just to involve one decent character amid all cruel and lustful and vengeful and cowardly ones?

That is conjecture (it was in fact suggested by Walter Leaf), but cannot be proven. Iliad could be historically accurate on Hector too. Especially if Homer was descended from Astyanax. We know HE did not continue royalty in Troy iself and traditions diverge about his fate (Homer giving no version in Iliad) so they seem to be educated guesses (like we also have about Caesarion). Why not add Homer descending from him to these? Unless we prefer Homer descending from Ulysses - or from both. A guess on why Iliad would be accurate is as good as a guess on why it would be inaccurate.

Figure of Cassandra, a prophetess of Apollo who was always right but never believed, as cursed by that god for refusing his advances?

For one thing, I think her main importance is after Iliad, when horse is left behind by Greeks.

For another, she could have been a prophetess of the true God (not to the world, but to the Trojan community which missed a chance of listening to her) who refused to simply worship Apollo. I have a hunch that the "age of heroes" was an age in which the evil Apollo cult of Delphi (on its real evils, compare the voodoo mediums now and the poor slaves possessed by "a Pythonic spirit" - presumably Apollo in Pagan eyes - of whom at least one was exorcised by St Paul). Her story could be the story of someone really resisting (as Hippolytus son of Theseus could have really opposed unseemly evils of the Venus cult) but recalled by a community which was no longer resisting these evils.

So, though one can guess that some parts of the story are as standing unhistoric, it would be difficult to pinpoint something as "this we can dismiss" (beyond details of weaponry ... and we cannot even be sure iron was lacking, since if Troy find supposed to be relevant was carbon dated to 1290's and earliest iron find (among very nearby Hittites) is carbon dated to before 1100, weapons of iron could also be used. Homer could be as accurate about Trojan war's weaponry as Beowulf poet is, if not of Geatish at least of Old English weaponry.

The "personal" rather than geopolitical motive of the war could also be historic. Some say Iraq was invaded for purely geopolitical reasons, but Saddam Hussein being accused of accumulating weapons of mass destruction is even so a historic accusation. Troy could have been attacked after a personal affront, because Trojans were not providing a purely diplomatic one.

I have not watched or read Anouilh's play "La Guerre de Troie n'aura pas lieu" but this would seem after my viewing resumés to be his thesis.

And ONE item I would agree to be unhistoric, or in my view or thesis TWO RELATED ones:

  • Absence of reference to Hittites (identified as such);
  • Presence of persons whose prowess was not at Troy.

I think Troy may well have fallen before Hattusha. If so, Hittites would have been more or less (at least diplomatically) involved in conflict.

We have the following scenarios on how the war relates to Hittites:

  • Both Trojans and Achaeans + Thessalians with Achilles are part of Hittite Empire.

    This is Walter Leaf's notion.

    If so, Trojan War could have been part of the Hittite civil war which led to the fall of Hattusha.

  • Trojans are so, but not Achaeans.

    Hittite and Egyptian texts tend to confirm (after what I gathered and recall) that Trojans were, at some time. We have no such confirmation about Achaeans, at least yet.

  • Trojans were so before the War, but no longer during the war.

    A German scholar has argued that Luwians (including Trojans) destroyed Hattusha before the Achaeans did so with Troy.

  • There were no Hittites - well, this is the only disproven notion. And all others involve SOME curious silence about Hittites on Homer's part.

My hunch is this, Hattusha was not destroyed just by Luwians being successful in a siege. Hattusha was abandoned and destroyed by those besieged (this hunch is from "Dark Lord's of Hattusha", another contemporary scholarly view in a documentary - Leaf is a few decades old).

If besiegers and besieged agreed to dissolve Trojan Empire, because seeing in the Civil War a sign "from the gods" that their world wide Imperial project (as the documentary considers they had) was not fated to succeed (but St Joseph descends from the wife of "Uriah the Hittite" through Solomon!), and they also agree to stop speaking about Hittites.

But of course plenty of the people who had ancestors fighting at Kadesh were still alive - so their exploits were by polite lying and compromise between personal honour telling stories and Imperial dishonour hiding overall stories - transferred to a smaller conflict one could still talk about. That smaller conflict being Troy.

If so, Ethiopians on the side of Trojans (not very prominent in Iliad) would imply Ethiopians were allied to Hittites at Kadesh. Egyptians on the side of Greeks - sorry, Achaeans - would imply Achaean forces at Troy were helping or continuing the Egyptian war effort at (now no longer mentionable) Kadesh.

This deliberate lying about the role of the Hittites - which by the time of Homer had presumably made him genuinely ignorant of Hittites - would be the only major departure between history and Iliad.

And such a departure would not have happened through the chosen people of God, from truth.

Therefore, the chosen wording would imply Genesis is "as accurate as the Iliad is, or would have been if they had not lied about Hittites, Apollo and Cassandra and been mistaken about their gods".

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Stigmata of St Francis

Two PS.

This post is, numbering also the drafts, 566. In actual published ones, when (and if) I do so in a moment, 546. But if 666 is Greek letters TEITAN, 566 is CEITAN (a fifth C Athenian spelling English pronunciation of Satan). You can conclude (as with posts or blogs having 666 in the numeric version of link (blog ID, post ID) that there is something Satanic about it. Or you can say on such a level these numbers are not relevant. Or you can conclude, as I do, someone is praying for me to "see" there is something Satanic about my approach to Paganism. I don't think it really is, but I do think those praying are not very attentive readers, and I wonder how I shall behave so as no longer have their prayers so relevant for me - unless they change their minds after reading a bit better.

Other thing, what the documentary on Dark Lords of Hattusha said (I think it was on BBC, I saw a video on youtube) about Hittite religion and sense of honour and laws suggests to me that heirs of Hittite culture could involve Greeks, Etruscans (mount Alverno is in Etruria) and Romans, but perhaps also Japanese (for which I think the figure of Puduhepa is suggestive both with regards to Venus Mater and to Amaterasu)./HGL

A third one, I tried to link to article on Puduhepa, but the admin here requires a second (usually not required) login for my continuing that search./HGL

Update, Our Lady of LaSalette day:

Link about Puduhepa (may God have mercy on her)./HGL

Friday, September 9, 2016

Response to Guillaume Durocher

It seems Guillaume Durocher has gone full Pagan:

The Occidental Observer : Plato’s Racial Republic
Guillaume Durocher : August 29, 2016

Egalitarians have argued that notions of nation and race are largely modern constructs. Marxists in particular have typically claimed that Western ruling classes invented these ideas to consolidate the power of bourgeois states or as a mere pretext to divide the working class along (supposedly imaginary) racial lines and to oppress their colonial subjects.

I do not know how many times "race" has been the criterium for diverse rights or duties in colonialism.

It was certainly the case in the thought - not sure how much became law - of Jules Ferry.

It is then important to look at the actual record of discussion of tribe, nation, and race in our European tradition. In fact, hereditarian and ethnocentric themes have been present in Western thought from the beginning. An example of this would be Herodotus, the very first historian, who 2,500 years ago already defined being part of the Greek nation through four criteria: common religion, common blood, common language, and common custom.

I agree that not having a common religion is an obstacle to being really the same nation, just as - on a deep level, not merely that of superficial divergences - having different laws is.

However, as a Christian, as a Catholic, I believe there is one religion which should be common to all of mankind.

For nations, race heritage is indeed a significant contribution - but a contribution.

Greek laws about race as meriting citizenship in one case (namely pure Athenian) but in another case (not pure Athenian) as meriting exclusion from valid legal marriage and in yet another case (pure Dacian or Thracian) as meriting slavery were Pagan and totalitarian mistakes.

In this article, I will give an account of racial and ethnic thought in Plato’s monumental philosophical treatise, The Republic, which is widely recognized as the founding text of the entire tradition of Western thought.

It is not "the" founding text of Western thought.

Even on a purely political level (not counting Timaeus or Aristotle's Physics, I think book VI), you have also to reckon with Aristotle's Polotics, with Plato's Laws, with Cicero's De Republica (a rip off of The State in general outline, but not necessarily in political detail), his De Officiis AND with ... let us not forget ... Christianity.

The point however is the principle: given the reality of heredity, improving the gene pool (or the breed or the race) is a moral good. Plato thus argues powerfully for regulating sex and reproduction, and not leaving such matters to the animalistic whims of individuals: “undisciplined sex (or undisciplined anything for that matter) is a profanity, and the rulers won’t allow it” (458d-e).[7] This program also justifies the state in drafting the youths it raises into the regime: “We’ve bred you” (520b).

Well, that is not Western, that is Nimrodean. It is a state ("city" as the word is used in Genesis 11) acting as slave owner to the citizens.

It is a moral good to opt out of and even to actively oppose a state making such claims. Because, a state doing so, is playing God. It becomes "a mighty hunter before the Lord" and "before" has been glossed, in Hebrew terms, as "in the face of" or as a preposition semantically synonym to the participle "defying". God owns man. State does NOT own man.

There is a reason why, when National Socialists started to apply these evils, the Catholic bishops resisted them.

Plato also argues for negative eugenics. This radical subordination of individual interest to the community seems extreme and unjust to our time. But the ancient Greeks lived far more difficult and violent lives. As a result, virtually all Greek city-states regarded excess population as undesirable and took measures against this, including the practice of infanticide. The most systematic in this respect were the Spartans, who would leave deformed newborns to die. Plato argues that children of the worst parents and those who are congenitally disabled should be segregated[8] from the elite, “otherwise our breed of guardians will become tainted” (460c).

One can say that this prejudice about banishing "base stock" from ... the élite ... has had an echo in politics even in Christian times. But hardly a full scale consistent application or even serious attempt at such.

Obviously, banishing base stock from overall people or from being born at all is a heinous crime beyond this recommendation of Plato.

Casti Connubii was condemning the more recent and more thoroughgoing applications.


Plato argues that enforcement of these eugenic measures could be achieved through religious education or myth. The parenting of low-grade children would become a religious taboo (my emphasis):


We’ll say he has sinned against both gods and men by fathering a child who (if the matter goes unnoticed and the child is born) will not have been affected by the rites and prayers which the priestesses and priests and the whole community pray at each wedding-festival — for every generation of children to improve on their parents’ in goodness and value — but will instead have been born under the influence of darkness and dire lack of self-control (461a-b).

Ah ... "we'll say" ... men deciding, for their wisdom and reasons, what to say about "the gods".

A kind of compliance which Hitler asked of Church men in general and got from Deutsche Christen - but not from the Catholic Church.

That is why, since my later teens, I have been distancing myself consistently from the Hitler régime, and preferring other Fascisms, Dollfuss and Schuschnigg, Franco and Salazar, and certain years of Il Duce himself (but not the Salò Republic, which a French speaker could call "bien nommée" due to La Riziera or - even before - Carta della Razza, and not his foreign policy against Serbs and Ethiopians). I have a horror for this modern stuff. And even if it happens to be rehashed ancient stuff, it is not traditional stuff.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
Day after Our Lady's Nativity

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Short History of Ghetto's in Papal States outside Rome and Ancona

Ghettos were erected in 1555, with Cum nimis absurdum. (Previous examples are Frankfurt and - in 1516 - Venice, but those are other states).

That was Paul IV.

Exit Paul IV, enter Pius IV. Exit Pius IV, enter Saint Pius V. 1569 he expels Jews from Papal States except Rome and Ancona.

Note that neither bull was a directive about treatment of Jews all through Christendom, though they could serve as an example. Both were concerning only the Papal States.


In other words, the treament of Cum Nimis Absurdum was, except for Rome and Ancona, only in function during 14 years. And obviously, even during that time, they were free to get to areas where things were freer for Jews.

As obviously, these measures only applied to unconverted Jews. A Christian of Jewish background was not allowed even, as far as I know, to stay in a ghetto. He was in some cases solemnly expelled from ghetto as soon as converting.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Bibl. Mouffetard
Nativity of Our Lady

Saturday, September 3, 2016

A Very Short Review of Hitler's Willing Executioners, what I know about it from wikipedia

The Wickipeejuh : Hitler's Willing Executioners

Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust is a 1996 book by American writer Daniel Goldhagen, in which he argues that the vast majority of ordinary Germans were "willing executioners" in the Holocaust because of a unique and virulent "eliminationist antisemitism" in the German political culture, which had developed in the preceding centuries. Goldhagen argues that this "eliminationist antisemitism" was the cornerstone of German national identity, and that this type of antisemitism was unique to Germany and because of it, ordinary German conscripts killed Jews willingly. Goldhagen asserts that this special mentality grew out of medieval attitudes from a religious basis, but was eventually secularized.

Extreme ultra-short review : BS.

A somewhat more detailed review: if Germans were eliminationist as antisemites, at that particular point of German history, it is because South German dislike of Jews and identification of Jews as a social problem had just very recently met a North German eliminationism about social problems (examplified in Rosa Luxemburg being, apart from Jewish, also North German and her solution to the Bourgeois society being a clearly eliminationist one).

There had also, in fact, been a Medieval eliminationist dislike of Jews. There was on one occasion a pogrom (not the only one, but the one I studied somewhat). There was also a repression of that pogrom. And there was a clergyman saying "regrettably we don't have any right to pogroms, Bible and Catholic Church don't allow that."

Well, if one could argue in any way, shape or form that the possible eliminationist antisemitism of Germans had any kind of roots in that Medieval eliminationist gut reaction (I think it involved disgust at a collective suicide or sth), it was somewhat suicidal of Jews to prone for centuries the elimination of whatever held that dislike of Jews back from being effectively eliminationist. Namely Catholicism.

Obviously, they had been more successful in the North. Where Catholic priests had been at times perceived as a social problem and where Reformation had become eliminationist about them. Where Analphabetism was more perceived as a social problem and where first compulsory school laws had become eliminationist about them.

And a few other social problems about which the North had been somewhat eliminationist, up to 1916 often with Jewish support.

Of course, the Jews were, while more or less helping to implant this eliminationism, also trying to eliminate the perception of Jews as being a social problem.

Otherwise, even they might have seen it was a somewhat suicidal thing to do.

However, they were less successful in the South. But, the South, including Austria, was also a place where Catholicism was strong and where Catholicism held back any and all social discontents from becoming eliminationist.

Now, the problem in this affair is, at a certain point, the South was humiliated by the North. Königgrätz ...? Reunification without Austria after Franco-Prussian War? Hitler had a history teacher who loved the Hohenzollerns. He loved efficiency.

And Jews had perhaps from time to time helped the North to be more prosperous than the South?

But, if we shall return a bit more to real history, how about facing the fact that for centuries, there was very little eliminationist antisemitism. Unless banning Jews from one city, then another, then a third was to be considered eliminationist. If in 1391 - 1401 they were banned from Palatinate, perhaps they had been readmitted there before in 1519 they were banned from Regensburg? Not very efficient eliminationism, if you ask me.

OK, there was a very bloody issue in Vienna in 1420 to 1421. There was perhaps a desecration behind it. But the point is, the Pope intervened. Pope Martin V was not happy with it.

Even that time in 1420, Jewish children below 15 were not eliminated from life, but only from the community - by enforced baptism. However, the Pope said, if you baptise a Jewish child under 12 without consent of his or her parents, you are excommunicated. So, no, I don't think the Wiener Gesera is a very early example of what Daniel Goldhagen considers the roots of a later secularised "eliminationist antisemitism". Back before secularisation, Church enforced eliminationism not becoming too traditional.

However, back to that clergyman after the pogrom. He prayed that in the end of days, Jews would have a country across the sea, far from Christians. It seems from how Daniel Goldhagen was greeted by his countrymen, that in a sense Jews got that. It's another question if US Jews are very far away from Christian peoples.

By the way, Daniel Goldhagen might be annoyed for my making a critique of his book without bothering to read it first. He's welcome to contact me with arguments against my position, from the book or new ones from his pocket.

I have a track record of answering arguments, of leaving as few arguments as possible unanswered.

See these two blogs:

Assorted retorts from yahoo boards and elsewhere

Correspondence of Hans Georg Lundahl

The short of it : being a survivor of what is described as a holocaust or as a genocide, rightly or wrongly, as is the case with Goldhagen's father, does not automatically make you an expert on what the motives of the perpetrators were.*

By the way, as I just read a survivor story by Maurice Cling, does Erich Goldhagen* recall seeing any mass killing by gas chamber or not? Maurice Cling did not.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Torcy, Médiathèque Ségrais
Pope St Pius X

* Daniel's father Erich is a survivor of some camp, wickipeejan article on English did not say which one.